Blank Face is more than the artist behind the name. It is a musical canvas fusing different styles and sounds into an engaging vibe. His latest single ‘Cycles’ continues this melding matching the mixture of influences with a unique lyricism and freestyle vocals. We sat down with Blank Face to talk about the new single, his creative process, music and much more!
OSR: Was there a moment or experience that drew you to making music?
Blank Face: I was probably around 15 at the time, when I found a real love for music. It was the first time I ever decided to write music. I wrote a song for my crush back in high school, as a typical lover boy. (laughs) I was learning how to play guitar from one of my ICT teachers and that was the first time I ever wrote a song. That process developed a never-ending love for music.
OSR: Is there a backstory to your new single ‘Cycles’?
Blank Face: Yes, there is actually. It has a rather sad backstory; I had just arrived back to Cardiff from a trip to Scotland to see a friend of mine. There was also a local girl there that I was hoping to become my girlfriend, but we ended up not being able to see each other as she turned down my advances. So, at home with my guitar, I was in my blues reminiscing the wasted effort as I felt mislead about our relationship.
I hadn’t felt heartbroken in a while and I just started playing and singing, talking about relatable relationship cycles which hurts a lot but also reminding myself to pick up the pieces and grow from the experience. It’s not a new experience to most of us but it’s a cycle, in the end, they tend to repeat themselves. The song is actually a phone recording from that moment I was in pain, truly one of my rawest musical moments.
OSR: ‘Cycles’ is an acoustic freestyle, how does this style affect your creative process?
Blank Face: It actually doesn’t affect my creative process and freestyling is my main creative process. I tend to freestyle a melody before I even write out the lyrics and most times I don’t need to as they come out as though the song was traditionally written.
OSR: What are the biggest influences on your music?
Blank Face: The biggest influence would be Afro music, alternative RnB and hip–hop. They really shaped my sound to what it is today. The key artists I tend to relate to would be Fela Kuti, Tay Iwar, John Legend, Masego, Logic, Jcole, Danileigh and Ed Sheeran.
OSR: What would you like people to take away from your music?
Blank Face: One word, Soul. I would like people to feel the soul in my music as I represent different vibes and sounds across my catalogue. Like an eccentric chameleon (laughs).
OSR: What was the biggest hurdle you had to overcome when recording ‘Cycles’?
Blank Face: I would say the biggest hurdle was sharing the track. I initially didn’t want to release this song at all. My friend had to bring it up a few times before I even considered even releasing the song. It is a rather vulnerable track and I initially felt some kind of way releasing this to the world.
OSR: None of your singles are within the same genre, do you actively strive for this or is it an organic progression?
Blank Face: Yes, I do actively strive for this. The idea behind Blank Face is to paint a blank canvas with different colours i.e. sounds, so as to create a beautiful picture.
OSR: What advice do you have for new artists wanting to follow in your footsteps?
Blank Face: Network with people in the industry, never get too comfortable with your talent and don’t ever slack on the music admin!
OSR: Who would you most like to collaborate with on a single?
Blank Face: Tay Iwar and Wizkid.
OSR: What can we expect from you in the next 12 month?
Blank Face: Well in the next 12 months, I will be releasing an EP after the single ‘Cycles’. I also hope to get on some really good features with local Cardiff artists and of course performances! I’ll be dropping some real Afro sounding melodies as well as more acoustic pop sounds.